From Richard Clark G4DDP, the main report from the first Lambourne End Field Event of 2022.
Over the weekend of the 22nd to 24th of July, LEFARS organised a Field Event at the Lambourne End Outdoor Centre. This location has a large field with plenty of space for aerials, is electrically quiet and we were allocated our own private toilet, washing and shower block. The location is also good for VHF operation being 93m asl with a clear take off in all directions. The site was available from 16:00 on Friday 22nd July and several members and a visitor took advantage of the excellent weather to camp over the weekend.
On Friday afternoon and into the evening, a small contingent of members set up the Coleman shelter with tea and coffee facilities, a 10m, 15m and 20m 3 element HF beam, a 40m / 80m dipole and a 2m /70cm X-300 colinear. As well as this, other members setup their own aerial systems. This still left a large area available for other members to come and play radio.
Despite the previous extremely hot weather, we were allowed to have a BBQ in fire pit area that was safe and unlikely to cause any issues although we did have copious amounts of water nearby just in case. On Saturday evening David M0VID ran the BBQ , assisted by John G8DZH with locally sourced Welsh Dragon sausages, mash and onions which was much appreciated by the small number of attendees.
Radio operating wise the following was tried over the weekend:
- A donated 6m super Moxon was put together and tried with contacts across Europe.
- The 40m / 80m dipole was used not only on SSB but also by Fred G3SVK for some CW.
- The HF beam was used by several members with Fred using CW with best being Japan on 15m.
- Merlin M0MFX tried his newly acquired 3W tr(u)SDX transceiver(details below) for QRP contacts on 20m with several YOTA stations worked with just 3 watts.
- A few stations were worked on 2m FM from the club’s Icom IC-7000.
- Malcolm M6OBH was able to try out his Yaesu FT 857D (bought a few years ago but not used) and gain some experience in operating assisted by Merlin M0MFX.
We were visited by John G4LTH from Corringham who stayed over the weekend and operated on 40m and 80m trying out his aerial system. Dave M0TAZ intended to try out various aerial systems but, at the last minute, was struck down by Covid and was unable to attend over the whole weekend, Chris G8OCV was also recovering from Covid and also was not able to attend.
Attendees over the weekend:
David M0VID and Pam, Richard G4DDP, John G0VEH, Dave M0TAZ, John G8DZH, George M1GEO, Brian M0OAB, Boo M6OAB, John G4LTH, John M0JGR, Kerry M6WHT
Short term visitors:
Malcolm M6OBH, Alan G4GQL, Peter G0IAP, Dave M0MBD, Fred G3SVK, Cliff 2E0RCW, Dave M0YOL, Kevin M7MJW and visitor Peter G4FQF.
All in all a good time was had by all those that attended although it was disappointing that, despite the location being close to our club and well publicised, very few members bothered to make any sort of appearance. It does make you think whether it is worth all the effort by a small number of members to stage events like this.
73 de Richard G4DDP.
From Merlin Fox M0MFX, a brief report.
Lambourne End was an opportunity to try out my new tr(u)SDX QRP rig in the field, as well as travel by folding bike. Everything needed for a QRP outing packed into my pannier bag with plenty of room to spare!
The radio was powered by a trio of 186250 lithium cells, recently liberated from an old laptop battery. Delivering 11.7 volts, the radio reported 2.5 watts on CW, key down. The EFHW I’d brought remained stowed, as the 3-ele 20m beam was available and I was soon working YOTA stations in Croatia and Hungary with solid 59 reports – my signal, not my age!
Other LEFARians were keen to sample the tiny radio and M1GEO made 10 contacts while I worked out how his coffee machine works. Malcolm M6OBH also got on the air, getting his first HF QSOs in the log. We then switched to Malcolm’s Yaesu 857D on the beam, where he worked more YOTA stations on 20m.
LEFARS field weekends are an opportunity to try out different gear and operate in conditions you may not have access to at home. For foundation licence members, this really is an opportunity to get some practical experience, as well having hands-on advice from club members. We are open to arranging mentoring days for more of this and know of two members who are keen to get their intermediate ticket – we will run a weekend this autumn if a group of six or more can be established!
73 de M0MFX
Further jottings from John G8DZH
With two reports received from Richard G4DDP and Merlin M0MFX, this leaves me with the easier task of adding some of the photos taken over the weekend and adding any further details. Also to note that there is another chance to visit Lambourne End this summer with the 2nd visit to the Outdoor Centre on 17th and 18th September with setting up on Friday PM 16th. With camping available, this is an ideal site to get away for the weekend, close to the club HQ as well.
Richard G4DDP has now updated the master G4ONP ADIF file to the Lambourne End field weekend. [A QSO summary may follow with an update]. Other callsigns were used /P, for example by Fred G3SVK when operating on CW from the club’s Icom IC-7300. Bandpass filters were utilised for HF, only one station on at a time per HF band.
Packing up started at 15:00 on Sunday and we left the site just before 18:00. I got home at 19:15 after (a few of us) unpacked.
The photos below try and include as many attendees as possible. Photo Credits to Brian M0OAB, John G0VEH and John G8DZH for permission to use in this report. There are other photos on the LEFARS Facebook page as well.
John Ray G8DZH
7th August 2022 [minor corrections & updates] 22:55
8th August 2022 [small correction] 20:50